THESIS WRITING ON COMMUNITY TRANSFER Community transfer is the sharing of knowledge, ideas and experience towards care, hope, leadership and change across boundaries (community to community). It als…

THESIS WRITING ON COMMUNITY TRANSFER

Community transfer is the sharing of knowledge, ideas and experience towards care, hope, leadership and change across boundaries (community to community). It also includes transfer of ways of thinking and approaching the situation in teamwork and participation.

My name is Ukeme Okon from Nigeria. I am actively involved in community processes that are linked with HIV/AIDS. I want everyone to join me in reaching out to local communities. That reason I have been sharing my experience with others.

Community have the sense of belonging which has really help the transfer of ideas and experience to work effectively. A sense of togetherness helps communities to develop their confidence and determination to seek solution to their problems. Community transfer provides for the effective and low-cost transfer of skills.

The Salvation Army (is a faith base organisation) have been working effectively to see communities start responding to issues affecting them. The Salvation Army believe that communities have the strength and the capacity to tackle the issues that are affecting our communities, since the grace of God is already there in our community.

Communities believe in the power of sharing that bring about stimulation of responses that lead to change. In other words, people themselves contribute to the sharing of concern and also looking for the possible way of solving them. Each community also believe that positive change could happen and the express hope about God’s presence with them in their communities.

Sharing is not strange to us because it is our way of live. The people themselves come together to share ideas. It is a combination of learning and mobilization that makes community exchanges such a powerful methodology. Local communities develop their own improvements to the difficult situations that they face. It gives opportunity for us to share our own experience with our communities. Transfer is the oldest, cheapest and most effective method of acquisition of knowledge and people share positive responses.

The facilitation team is a pool of resource people that has the experience to share vision and ways of working; and these include:

ðThey work by invitation

ðLearning and sharing of experience

ðLearning from local action experience through participation

The facilitation team supports a local response and stimulates the community towards response and has to integrate and join with the local team so that they can transfer skills and experience.

Frontier is a six weeks immersion, where youth from different communities come together to stay in a local community. One week orientation, follow by the process (4 weeks) and a week debrief.

Team building is the transfer ideas that builds the human capacity and empowers the youth in taking up the leadership role. The reason for these is help continue where the facilitation team stopped. During team building, the facilitation team share experience and creates awareness on the danger of HIV/AIDS in the community and this help in bringing change in the community. The facilitation team uses SALT approach in the community visit to stimulate the community towards response.

S- Share; sharing of experience, knowledge and ideas. Between the community and the Facilitation team.

A- Appreciate; appreciating already existing programme.

L- Learn; learning ways of working.

T- Transfer; transferring of experience, knowledge and ideas.

My frontier [1]experience really motivated me and I learnt a lot through the process. I saw myself improving spiritually and intellectually.

The impact of the facilitation team was felt in my community Akai, it was not easy for me to join the facilitation team, but later I found it easy because the team members really motivated me like coming to my house to call me during the community visit. Learning from the facilitation team during the reflection period. Since I discovered that the word of God is the lamp unto my feet and light unto my path way (Psalm 119vs105), I’m growing in my understanding of righteousness in Christ; and by this knowledge I am doing great exploits and have been learning from others and also sharing experiences and supporting others.

I learnt the experience of the facilitation team, but still I did not believe that it would work, because I was a shy person and can’t talk to people easily. It started to catch on gradually. I learnt from my neighbours about HIV/AIDS but the facilitation team would come and ask me to join them during the community visit. In the community I was asked to be the interpreter because I understand the local language. I thought that they were against me, but it worked and here am I as a member of the facilitation team. Today what really motivated me was how my community took bold, steps and also in responding to matters affecting them. They took the bulls by the horn.

My vision is to see other community responding to issues affecting them because they have the capacity and the strength to respond to their problems. “I have a broader vision for Africa.That Africa won’t just be a land where people feel sorry for us, but where something good and long lasting comes out of us” said Utibe a team member. If communities start responding to matters affecting them, the whole of Africa will be conducive for everyone to live. This could be done through conversation and sharing of experience. Also going to where there are no responses to stimulate them towards response.

During the FRONTIER process, the facilitation team stayed in a local community, and the team shared experiences and also learnt from the local team[2] and the community. The facilitation team stimulates and supports a local community response through an integrated mission approach. Using the SALT approach, also team work brings success as a result of the combined mission. The local team help cover the unreached part of the community that the facilitation team may not be able to cover because it is a continuous process. Through relationship building or connections in a community as vision aim being planned by the team that desires and has one common goal, which is to learn and share ways of working. The concept of the facilitation team is to learn, support and share experience with the local community.

Community transfer can happen anywhere through conversation in the neighbourhoods, community gathering market place. During the conversation, the facilitation team will ask strategic question and also listening, So that they could also share experience.

In the process of discussing, the community members share their concerns and their strengths. This gives an opening to the facilitation team to share their own experience of how people respond to the issue in their (the facilitator’s community). This often arouses great interest from the community in details of who we are and what communities we come from.

The team visited a lady who said she has not heard of HIV/AIDS and that it doesn’t even exist and the facilitation team shared their experience on what has been happening in their various communities. The lady said, “God will never allow it to come to our community”. But during the follow-up 23rd June 2006 the facilitation team had a conversation with the same lady but this time she said that she believed that HIV/AIDS exists and that she has formed an anti aids club to sensitise their community members and their neighbouring communities towards HIV/AIDS.

Stories of Changes Due To Transfer

Youth got converted.

The youth got converted to the Salvation Army due to the impact that facilitation team made in my community. Personally I got converted to the Salvation Army due to the impact that I felt, most especially seeing other youth taking part in the leadership role.

Sam story.

Sam was deprived of a job, because his grandparents were in debt in the community. He was asked to pay the money before he could take part in any of the community programmes. But he could not afford such an amount. The facilitation team had a conversation with him and together we all came up with some ideas. Sam decided to visit the king so that they could both deliberate on what next. During the follow up visit, Sam story changed. He was asked by the king to pay just half of the money which he could afford. He now works in one of the companies owned by the community.

Faith story (behavioural change).

The facilitation team spoke with a lady who said that her daughter was very stubborn, the team later talked to the girl who was a member the local team. During the debrief the team revisited the lady and she thanked the team for their help. Her daughter’s behaviour changed. A lot of youth in this community are changing since they realise the effect of their stubbornness. Behavioural change is taking place.

‘‘Let’s take the bulls by the horn’’ said Asuquo, a team member. Some of their ideas included starting within their homes (home visit), meeting with community leaders to share their concern and looking for a possible way of solving it. Going to community visit and starting a kids club. These were some of the next steps of the Akai local facilitation team.

We have potential youth in these following communities Akai, Supare and Etioro. They have wide range of experience to share with other young people and their communities. They have been going to community visit and also they have a kids club. One of the frontier team members, (Ayo) who participated in the Frontier processed and in return shared his experience with the community. He started a kids club and now has a local team. He transferred his frontier experience to another community at Ibadan.

Akai community transfers experience to their neighbouring communities and in return the neighbouring community also share their experience through conversation. They combine their experience and looked for possible ways of solving their problems. It expands their knowledge and strength. Each of these communities believes in sharing which has really helped their communities. “I believe in the power of sharing, which has really changed lives”, said elder Ezekiel.

AKAI

IKOT AFAHA

IKOT IBOM

EDEM IDIM

IKOT AKITAT

IKOT EKWERE AFAHA

IKOT OKORO


This shows the transfer map of Akai and the six other neighbouring communities. The team stayed at Akai and they could not reach the neighbouring communities. But the local team members who are also part of Akai community has been able to transfer and share experiences with the other communities. Also learning from that community, there is increase in awareness of HIV/AIDS and others things affecting their communities. This has been done through transfer from community to community. We have potential youths in these communities, that why community transfer is working effectively.

The local facilitation team does the home visits in order to share experiences and learn from those communities. The exchange of experience from one community to another is a process that takes place in homes and neighbourhood conversation.

The people themselves will continually be involved in this process and this happens between the period of 2 to 3months and the approximate people reached by the local team members in a day is 20 to 40 people. During the follow up process of Akai stories of changes were shared and the people are responding to matters affecting their community. The time/frame was from August 2nd to December 3rd 2005.

Community Transfer Map of Supare/Etioro

AKURE

OGBAGI


ETIORO AND

SUPARE

AKUNGBA


This shows the transfer map of Supare/Etioro of sharing of experience and ideas to the unreached part of the communities. The local facilitation team in both communities does home visits in order to share their experience and also learning and their capacity and confidence is built up within the communities and their development options are extended. The more the communities talk about their own growth and the more they are aware of it, the more confidently they speak and the greater their capacity increases. Approximately ten to twenty people are been met in a day, within the period of one to two months and the time frame was from April to June. The follow-up process clearly indicated that change is occurring in the community, the community largely attributes the changes to work, and stories of changes were shared by the members of the community.

The people of my community (Akai) thought that the facilitation team came to share money and drugs. An old lad once asked me, “Are these people (facilitation team) here to share drugs”. I said no, that they were there to stay with us, to learn and share with us. Let the community know that we are not just in their community because you want to be there, but we are there because of their community, we (facilitation team) are there to stimulate the community towards response, you are there to help the community to identify their strength such as care, hope, change, transfer and leadership, let them know that you’ve not come to their community to help them solve their problems, but to share experience of what has been happening in other communities and how they find solution to those things affecting them, an experience is gained through experiential learning so has to share and transfer the experience to their neibouring communities.

Every community member is a potential tool to their community, so you don’t have to keep to yourself what you’ve learn from others; try to share your experience to other community, transfer ideas to others, so that the community will start experiencing changes.

Facilitation team

ASUQUO

JOSEPH

UKEME

EMMANUEL


The community owned transfer of vision, change and capacities for response will all contribute to more positive environment.

Exchange leads to good sharing of experience, sharing of ideas between communities have been continually developing because it helps to expand their knowledge, it draws large numbers of people into a process of change and helps to enable the community to federate, therefore developing a collective vision. It helps to create personalised and strong bonds between communities that share common problems.

Jolene from Kenya went back to her community after the frontier process and shared her experience to her local team members. She encourages and motivated her local team to also share their experience to others[3]

Youth are now taking part in the leadership role (youth chairman and town crier), and being able to respond to matters affecting their community, Since they realise that they are no longer leaders of tomorrow but today.

Community conversation enables the community to articulate and develop their knowledge and understanding of their situation and to tackle it. Sharing of ideas should start by encouraging communities to reflect on their own situation. Together neighbours identify their problems and explore possible solutions. The development process is the creation of knowledge, sharing a supportive and changing environment by exploring old issues in a new context often provides a creative opportunity for establishing new perspective. Capacity development through the sharing of lesson learned, transfer of ideas and linkage with neighbouring communities.

Through the community transfer communities can respond effectively to things affecting their community such as HIV/AIDS, prostitution, poverty and these are the few things that really affect the community. They can start by sharing ideas and knowledge among themselves and this could lead to the solving of their problems. This can be done through community meetings and sharing of ideas. They can transfer the possible solution to their neighbours and this could lead to possible solution, like HIV/AIDS that is one of the major things affecting the communities. The community can know more about HIV/AIDS. It is the duty of that community to transfer and create awareness to the neighbouring community. The awareness will be spread all over the community and it neighbours and this could lead to change in attitude.

Conclusion

Transfer between different communities creates a growing solidarity and sharing of experience between communities. Community members have the sense of belonging that really help the transfer of experience and ideas to work effectively. Jesus came to our community to share the good news with us. The disciples of Jesus travelled from one community to another sharing the good news and also the story of Jesus. It was the impact that Jesus had made in the lives of people. That’s why people are still sharing the good news. Jesus came to share life, pain and joy with us. That is why people are walking in his ‘foot steps’. Since the grace of God is already there in our communities we have the capacity to reach out to our neighbouring communities.


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Comment by Rituu B. Nanda on March 18, 2010 at 10:18pm
Dear Ukeme,

Greetings from India!

Thanks for this inspiring post. I strongly feel that transfer leads to immense learning and sharing. This brings together the knowledge, experience and skills of multiple communities.

In a tiny little village of Molvum in Northeast India the Church has fixed last sunday of the month for contributions from the community for the sick including PLHIV. The community has shared its experiences in a meeting with eight other churches illustrating the the ever-growing ripple effect.

Great going, Ukeme! Look forward to more postings:-)

Warm regards,

Rituu
Comment by Laurence Gilliot on March 18, 2010 at 2:37pm
Dear Ukeme,

I really like what you wrote here:
“I have a broader vision for Africa.That Africa won’t just be a land where people feel sorry for us, but where something good and long lasting comes out of us” said Utibe a team member. If communities start responding to matters affecting them, the whole of Africa will be conducive for everyone to live. This could be done through conversation and sharing of experience.

It is so true. It all depends on the lens we choose to see the world. I'm here in Congo for the moment. You could look at this country and say "nothing works" or say "communities are so strong, they are full of energy". Depending on the lens we choose, we will have energy to hope, change, act and transfer.

Thanks for sharing!

Laurence
Comment by ukeme okon on March 17, 2010 at 5:45pm
This is one of Community responses experience.................................I thank God for the opportunity Given to me

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